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The Non-Snobby Houston Dining Guide

This isn’t a guide to the fanciest food in town. We aren’t trying to be like the Michelin Guide. We’re normal people, who just like really, really good food. What follows is what we believe is the best food in Houston – we ignore factors like the pedigree of the chef and the price level. Our sole criterion is how good it tastes.

1. Frank’s Pizza

Cheers to Randi Butler

Address: 417 Travis St, Houston, TX 77002
Phone: (713) 225-5656
Hours:
Mon – Wed: 11:00 am – 10:00 pm
Thu: 11:00 am – 1:00 am
Fri – Sat: 11:00 am – 3:00 am
Sun: 11:00 am – 10:00 pm
Menu
Yelp: (4 stars 400 + reviews)
Website

  • Excellent NY-style pizza
  • Open till 3AM on Friday & Saturday…solid choice after a night of drunken debauchery

2. Ambrosia

Cheers to the gorgeous Cristina Galushko and her always glamorous friends

Address: 2003 Lexington St, Houston, TX 77098
Phone: (832) 649-4636
Hours:
Mon: 5:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Tue – Thu: 5:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Fri – Sat: 5:00 pm – 11:00 pm
Sun: 5:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Menu
Yelp: (4 stars 500 + reviews)
Website

  • South East Asian Tapas
  • Very cool concept that blends flavors from multiple countries like India, Thailand, Vietnam
  • We love the veggie samosas, curry wedges & chilli paneer

3. Local Foods

Cheers to the always epic @htowninmymouth

Address: 2424 Dunstan Rd, Houston, TX 77005
Phone: (713) 521-7800
Hours:
Mon – Sun: 10:00 am – 8:30 pm
Menu:Not Available
Yelp: (4 stars 1100 + reviews)
Website

  • Great spot for vegetarians
  • Love the brussel sprouts, vegan chilli, house chips and taco salad

4. Oxheart

Cheers to the brilliant Matt Ufford

Address: 1302 Nance St, Houston, TX 77002
Phone: (832) 830-8592
Yelp: (3.5 stars 270 + reviews)
Website

  • Great tasting menu
  • Great use of vegetables, international spices
  • Very innovative, progressive chef and cuisine

5. The Breakfast Klub

Address: 3711 Travis St, Houston, TX 77002
Phone: (713) 528-8561
Hours:
Mon – Fri: 7:00 am – 2:00 pm
Sat – Sun: 8:00 am – 2:00 pm
Menu
Yelp: (4 stars 2300 + reviews)
Website

  • As expected, breakfast game on point
  • However, they are very popular and the lines are LONG

6. Pass and Provisions

Cheers to the awesome @houstontastebuds

Address: 807 Taft St, Houston, TX 77019
Phone: (713) 628-9020
Menu
Yelp: (4 stars 600 + reviews)
Website

Two restaurants under one roof. The Pass, offering an intimate, fine-dining, open kitchen experience, & Provisions, serving inventive ingredients in a casual setting

  • At Provisions brussels sprouts and burata pizza are must tries
  • Pass is fun, but at $150-200/pp it’s not an everyday spot

7. Tacos A Go Go

Thanks @dariamun

Address: 3704 Main St, Houston, TX 77002
Phone: (713) 807-8226
Hours:
Mon – Thu: 7:00 am – 10:00 pm
Fri: 7:00 am – 2:00 am
Sat: 8:00 am – 2:00 am
Sun: 8:00 am – 9:00 pm
Menu: Not Available
Yelp: (4 stars 500 + reviews)
Website

  • We love the poblano mushroom quesadilla
  • Great tacos, our favorite is the Verde

8. Velvet Taco

Cheers to the super pretty Lisette Cristina Godinez

Address: 4819 Washington Ave, Houston, TX 77077
Phone: (832) 834-5908
Hours:
Mon – Wed: 10:00 am – 12:00 am
Thu: 10:00 am – 2:00 am
Fri: 10:00 am – 4:00 am
Sat: 9:00 am – 4:00 am
Sun: 9:00 am – 12:00 am
Menu
Yelp: (4 stars 900 + reviews)
Website

  • They make their own tortillas, slow roast their corn, and make everything from scratch
  • They use fresh fruit and sorbets in their margaritas
  • Portion sizes are great and they are open LATE!

9. Underbelly

Big thanks to the epic @boomtownbites

Address: 1100 Westheimer Rd, Houston, TX 77006
Phone: (713) 528-9800

The Lunch Menu
The Dinner Menu
The Dessert Menu
The Wine Bar Food Menu 

Yelp: (3.5 stars 800 + reviews)
Website

Underbelly is the story of Chef Chris Shepherd’s journey through Houston. Beneath the city’s surface—its underbelly, the things not seen—lies an endless array of the ingredients and cultures that shape Chris’ perspectives on food. Through his food, Chris asks his customers to experience not just Houston’s flavor, but its culture as well.

10. JINYA Ramen Bar

Address: 3201 Louisiana St, Ste 105, Houston, TX 77006
Phone: (832) 925-8596
Hours:
Mon – Thu: 11:00 am – 11:00 pm
Fri – Sat: 11:00 am – 2:00 am
Sun: 11:00 am – 11:00 pm
Menu: Not Available
Yelp: (4 stars 1100 + reviews)
Website

At JINYA, experience ramen for the first time on this side of the Pacific like it was meant to be – with thick, rich broth in perfect balance with handmade noodles.

  • They only use FUJI which is 99.9 percent free from impurities
  • They have the special aging process that their noodles undergo before they’re cooked and served

11. Huynh Restaurant

Address: 912 St. Emanuel St, Houston, TX 77003
Phone: (713) 224-8964
Hours:
Mon – Thu: 11:00 am – 9:00 pm
Fri: 11:00 am – 10:00 pm
Sat: 11:00 am – 10:00 pm
Sun: Closed
Lunch Menu
Dinner Menu
Yelp: (4 stars 500 + reviews)
Website

  • Solid, though slightly Americanized, Vietnamese spot
  • Houston Chron says it offers “major bang for your buck” and the Houston Press rated it the Best Vietnamese Restaurant in 2010 & 2016
  • BYOB with a $2/pp corkage fee

12. Backstreet Café

Big thanks to the always charming Gabriel Aguirre

Address: 1103 S Shepherd Dr, Houston, TX 77019
Phone: (713) 521-2239
Hours:
Mon – Thu: 11:00 am – 10:00 pm
Fri: 11:00 am – 11:00 pm
Sat: 10:00 am – 11:00 pm
Sun: 10:00 am – 9:00 pm
Menu
Yelp: (4 stars 900 + reviews)
Website

Backstreet Cafe’s menu is a perfect reflection of diverse Houston, with Southern, Cajun, Creole, Hispanic and Asian influences, among others. The menu changes seasonally to capture the freshest flavors, with a nod to local and sustainable ingredients.

  • Famous for its Sunday brunch, complete with live Jazz, great food and cocktails
  • The wine and spirits program is excellent as well

13. Thai Gourmet

Address: 6324 Richmond Ave, Houston, TX 77057
Phone: (713) 780-7955
Hours:
Mon – Thu: 11:00 am – 2:30 pm & 5:00 pm – 9:30 pm
Fri: 11:00 am – 2:30 pm & 5:00 pm – 10:30 pm
Sat: 11:00 a, – 10:00 pm
Sun: Closed
Menu
Yelp: (4 stars 1100 + reviews)
Website

Thai Gourmet has been in business since 1995.  Kru Pong and his wife, Toon, have been cooking up (almost) authentic Thai food for more than 27 years in 3 continents.

  • Amazing Thai spot – they’ve been crushing it and have expanded recently
  • The service and presentation of the food are both excellent but the star is the taste
  • Simply speaking – some of the best Thai food anywhere outside of Thailand

14. Maharaja Bhog

Cheers to the super cool Yogini

Address: 8338 Southwest Fwy, Houston, TX 77074
Phone: (713) 771-2464
Hours:
Mon: 11:30 am – 2:30 pm & 6:00 pm – 9:30 pm
Tue: Closed
Wed – Thu: 11:30 am – 2:30 pm & 6:00 pm – 9:30 pm
Fri – Sat: 11:30 am – 3:00 pm & 6:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Sun: 11:30 am – 3:00 pm & 6:00 pm – 9:30 pm
Yelp: (4 stars 300 + reviews)
Website

  • Amazing spot for a vegetarian thali meal
  • Authentic Rajasthani and Gujrati dishes
  • They serve different dishes each day, with up to 900 different dishes in a month

15. Empire Café

Big thanks to the super fit Nina Terregino

Address: 1732 Westheimer Rd, Houston, TX 77098
Phone: (713) 528-5282
Hours:
Mon – Thu: 7:30 am – 10:00 pm
Fri – Sat: 7:30 am – 11:00 pm
Sun: 7:30 am – 10:00 pm
Menu
Yelp: (4 stars 1200 + reviews)
Website

  • Busy cafe with excellent desserts and great coffee
  • Great for breakfast

16. Luigi’s Pizzeria

Thanks @natachasentm

Midtown Address: 3700 Almeda Rd, Houston, TX 77004
Bellaire Address: 4505 Bissonnet Street, Bellaire, TX 77401
Phone: (281) 793-3333
Hours:
Mon – Thu: 11:00 am – 10:00 pm
Fri – Sat: 11:00 am – 11:00 pm
Sun: 12:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Menu
Yelp: (4 stars 700 + reviews)
Website

  • BYOB at the Bellaire location
  • Huge, NY-Pizza slices
  • Great if you like your pizza with a lot of sauce

17. Hot Toppings Pizza

Address: 7705 Westheimer, Ste 200, Houston, TX 77063
Phone: (713) 497-5229
Hours:
Mon – Sum: 11:00 am – 10:00 pm
Menu
Yelp: (5 stars 200 + reviews)
Website

Hot Toppings offers a simple one-priced pizza or salad without charging for toppings. Build your pizza and salad your way or select from a few standard pizza creations. Fresh Produce means fresher salads and you’re sure to love our selection of specialty hot sauces!

18. Torchy’s Tacos

Big thanks to the talented Joel Love

Address: 2411 S Shepherd Dr, Houston, TX 77019
Phone: (713) 595-8226
Hours:
Mon – Thu: 7:00 am – 10:00 pm
Fri: 7:00 am – 11:00 pm
Sat: 8:00 am – 11:00 pm
Sun: 8:00 am – 10:00 pm
Menu
Yelp: (4 stars 1000 + reviews)
Website

  • Fun, hipster taco joint with excellent street corn
  • Started with 1 location in 2006; today they have over 30 locations

19. Fat Bao

Thanks @jernert

Address: 3419 Kirby Dr, Houston, TX 77098
Phone: (713) 677-0341
Hours:
Mon – Sat: 11:00 am – 10:00 pm
Sun: 12:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Menu:Not Available
Yelp: (4 stars 900 + reviews)
Website

  • Kind of pricey but definitely worth a try
  • Korean BBQ meets Bao

20. Bombay Pizza

Address: 914 Main St, Ste 105, Houston, TX 77002
Phone: (713) 654-4444
Hours:
Mon – Thu: 10:30 am – 10:00 pm
Fri: 10:30 am – 11:00 pm
Sat: 12:00 pm – 11:00 pm
Sun: 12:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Menu
Yelp: (4 stars 800 + reviews)
Website

  • An Indian-Italian pizzeria
  • Serves Italian cuisine graced with Indian herbs and spices, Pasta, Mini-Burgers, Soup & Salads, Desserts and a diverse selection of beverages ranging from local & international beers to all-natural sodas imported from India

21. Dolce Vita

Thanks to the epic @htowninmymouth

Thanks Dustin!

Address: 500 Westheimer Rd, Houston, TX 77006
Phone: (713) 520-8222
Hours:
Mon: Closed
Tue – Thu: 5:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Fri: 5:00 pm – 11:00 pm
Sat: 11:30 am – 11:00 pm
Sun: 11:30 am – 10:00 pm
Menu
Yelp: (4 stars 500 + reviews)
Website

The second establishment in the Chef Marco Wiles family, Dolce Vita aims to bring the taste of true authentic Neapolitan pizza to Houston.

  • Fresh ingredients, large size and well-executed Neapolitan-style pizza
  • Nice interior and patio space

22. Fadi’s Meyerland Mediterranean Grill

Address: 4738 Beechnut St, Houston, TX 77096
Phone: (713) 666-4644
Hours:
Mon – Thu: 11:00 am – 9:00 pm
Fri – Sat: 11:00 am – 10:00 pm
Sun: 11:00 am – 9:00 pm
Menu
Yelp: (4 stars 400 + reviews)
Website

  • Solid comfort food
  • Cafeteria style – go down the line adding things to your plate
  • Tons of hummus choices – jalapeno, garlic, etc

23. Piola

Cheers to the super cool Cristy Torres

Address: 3201 Louisiana St, Ste 103, Houston, TX 77006
Phone: (713) 524-8222
Hours:
Mon – Thu: 11:00 am – 11:00 pm
Fri: 11:00 am – 12:00 am
Sat: 12:00 pm – 12:00 am
Sun: 12:00 pm – 11:00 pm
Menu
Yelp: (4 stars 400 + reviews)
Website

  • Huge success in Florida, now in Houston
  • The pizza options are plentiful and delicious
  • The atmosphere is lively / loud

24. Coltivare

Shoutout to the stunning Molly Patel

Address: 3320 White Oak Dr, Houston, TX 77007
Phone: (713) 637-4095
Yelp: (4 stars 400 + reviews)
Website

  • Excellent pizza and gnocchi
  • We also recommend the cauliflower side

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